General Motors has shut down its car-sharing service — called Maven — amid COVID-19 and social distancing, reports The Verge.
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COVID-19 has canceled GM's car-sharing service Maven
"After critically looking at our business, the industry, and what's going on with COVID-19, we have made the tough but necessary decision to wind down our business," said GM in a Tuesday email sent to Maven customers, reports The Verge.
Wowwww, Covid19 claimed the Maven car-sharing platform, it's shutting down immediately. Bummer, it was one of the better ones. pic.twitter.com/tanmpjEhOS— Owen Williams ⚡ (@ow) April 21, 2020
"Covid19 (sic) claimed the Maven car-sharing platform, it's shutting down immediately. Bummer, it was one of the better ones," said Owen Williams, columnist at Medium's OneZero, in a tweet that shared GM's letter to Maven customers.
Initially designed to rival the Car2Gos and Zipcars of the world, GM expanded Maven in 2018, to give car owners the option to also share their vehicles on the service, similar to Getaround or Turo services.
UPDATE April 21, 2:30 PM EDT: GM's Maven Gig also shuttered
At its greatest height, Maven was available to customers in 17 cities throughout the U.S., however, Maven's first CEO stepped down early 2019, and by mid-2019 GM had pulled the service from half of its cities, including New York City, Boston, and Chicago. Maven was still in operation in cities like Los Angeles, Washington, DC, Detroit, and Toronto until March — when services were suspended amid the pandemic.
"We've gained extremely valuable insights from operating our own car-sharing business," said Pamela Fletcher, vice president of GM's global innovation, in a statement. "Our learnings and developments from Maven will go on to benefit and accelerate the growth of other areas of GM business."
The part of GM's service that offered cars on an exclusive basis for Uber or Lyft drivers — Maven Gig — will also be shut down, but "will likely be the part that takes the longest to finalize," said GM, according to The Verge. "[W]e will ask customers to return [Maven Gig] vehicles only when it's safe and allowed to do so. We also don't want to disrupt important food and supply deliveries Gig drivers might be making," added the company.
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